Weight loss has been my biggest struggle and it’s been really hard since I had a hysterectomy in 2020. I’m 37 and my husband, Casey, and I have five children between us. I was always on the go. We’d take my son, Boston, to football and lacrosse, and it was like, “Okay we’re hungry, let’s stop at Chick-fil-A.” I was stress eating, there was never time to exercise, and I wasn’t sleeping well. I was taking care of everyone else, but not myself. I didn’t like the way I looked and everything hurt. I hit the scale and I weighed 177 pounds.

My family’s been through a lot of changes. 

We moved from St. George, Utah, where I was born and raised, to South Carolina for my work. But our younger kids were struggling and missing their friends. So my husband and the kids moved back to Utah and I stayed here. Eventually, the plan is for me to move back home.

Living by myself has its ups and downs, but I have time to focus on myself.

That’s the positive side. I started the Thrive Challenge and I’m focusing on what I’m putting into my body; I read labels and I cut down on sugar. For dinner, I’ll bake fish or chicken and have it with a salad or green vegetables. I love asparagus and broccoli. 

Working out is my passion.

I bought an Apple Watch and I monitor my activities. I do what I call “yogging.” I’ll walk and then jog and then walk again. My stamina’s improved and I am doing an 11-minute mile now. I work out with weights, kettlebells, and bands to high energy music like Evanescence and Eminem. I’ve lost 15 pounds and I feel so motivated because I’m seeing results. 

When I’m with the kids, there’s not a lot of quiet time, so I’m making the most of the calm. 

I meditate and do deep breathing to connect with the universe. At night, I turn off my phone, put on soothing music, and think of happy thoughts, like my kids or a tropical rainforest. I’m sleeping through the night.

When I moved to South Carolina, I didn’t know anyone and I’ve made good friends.

I met my friend, Lindi, through our dogs; I was out in the park with my husky, Khalee. Now we go for walks together. I’ve met other great women, and we have our own little sisterhood, we’re all from different walks of life. We’ll have game nights and one evening we played a murder mystery which was a lot of fun. 

We’re accountable to each other. 

We share recipe ideas, and we get together once or twice a month. We’ll eat cheese and fruit and veggies and catch up. The other day they said, “Jamie, when we think of what we want to look like, it’s you, with your body!” I said, “Wow seriously guys?” It felt really good hearing that because I’ve worked so hard. 

We’re there for each other at the drop of a hat.

My friend, Lindi, has two young kids and her husband travels for work so I support her and I’ve been a second mother to those children. We’ll go grocery shopping together and I’ll watch her kids. 

I miss my family, but I tell myself this is temporary.

It may sound silly, but I know that taking this time for myself is making me a better mom. And as much as we didn’t want it, the time apart is good for me and my husband. He’s definitely appreciating what I do. I am his rock and now he’s doing everything with the kids. He’s like, “Gosh babe I had no idea you do so much!”

At work, I’m more positive.

I’m highly invested in my team and I listen to them. One associate had to have surgery on her foot and was telling me how scared she was, so I encouraged her to keep calm, and I reminded her to rest and not to rush back. I said, “You know what, we’ll figure it out until you’re back.” You only get one body and you’ve got to take care of it. 

I feel like I’m already a winner.  

I’m becoming a better version of myself every single day and I’m grateful for each moment. Life is short and precious and we need to share our love with the people around us. 

— Jamie Case, Distribution Center #6014, Laurens, SC; $5K Winner

The Thrive Challenge is all about making small, better choices in your everyday life using the Thrive platform (on web or mobile) in whatever area you want to prioritize. Join the Thrive Challenge here and submit your story for a chance to win part of a $1,000,000 prize pool.